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US Federal Complaint Against Arizona Immigration Law

US Federal Complaint Against Arizona Immigration Law

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Published by Milton Recht
US Federal Complaint Against State Of Arizona's Immigration Law
US Federal Complaint Against State Of Arizona's Immigration Law

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Categories:Types, Legal forms
Published by: Milton Recht on Jul 08, 2010
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07/07/2010

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Tony WestAssistant Attorney GeneralDennis K. BurkeUnited States AttorneyArthur R. GoldbergAssistant Director, Federal Programs BranchVaru Chilakamarri (NY Bar #4324299)Joshua Wilkenfeld (NY Bar #4440681)U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division20 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W.Washington, DC 20530Tel. (202) 616-8489/Fax (202) 616-8470varudhini.chilakamarri@usdoj.gov
 Attorneys for the United States
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTFOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONAThe United States of America,Plaintiff,v.The State of Arizona; and Janice K. Brewer,Governor of the State of Arizona, in herOfficial Capacity,Defendants.No. ________________
COMPLAINT
Plaintiff, the United States of America, by its undersigned attorneys, brings this civilaction for declaratory and injunctive relief, and alleges as follows:
INTRODUCTION
1. In this action, the United States seeks to declare invalid and preliminarily andpermanently enjoin the enforcement of S.B. 1070, as amended and enacted by the State of Arizona, because S.B. 1070 is preempted by federal law and therefore violates theSupremacy Clause of the United States Constitution.2. In our constitutional system, the federal government has preeminent authority toregulate immigration matters. This authority derives from the United States Constitution andnumerous acts of Congress. The nation’s immigration laws reflect a careful and considered
 
 
12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728balance of national law enforcement, foreign relations, and humanitarian interests. Congresshas assigned to the United States Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice,and Department of State, along with other federal agencies, the task of enforcing andadministering these immigration-related laws. In administering these laws, the federalagencies balance the complex – and often competing – objectives that animate federalimmigration law and policy. Although states may exercise their police power in a mannerthat has an incidental or indirect effect on aliens, a state may
not 
establish its ownimmigration policy or enforce state laws in a manner that interferes with the federalimmigration laws. The Constitution and the federal immigration laws do not permit thedevelopment of a patchwork of state and local immigration policies throughout the country.3. Despite the preeminent federal authority and responsibility over immigration, theState of Arizona recently enacted S.B. 1070, a sweeping set of provisions that are designedto “work together to discourage and deter the unlawful entry and presence of aliens” bymaking “attrition through enforcement the public policy of all state and local governmentagencies in Arizona.”
See
S.B. 1070 (as amended by H.B. 2162). S.B. 1070’s provisions,working in concert and separately, seek to deter and punish unlawful entry and presence byrequiring, whenever practicable, the determination of immigration status during any lawfulstop by the police where there is “reasonable suspicion” that an individual is unlawfullypresent, and by establishing new state criminal sanctions against unlawfully present aliens.The mandate to enforce S.B. 1070 to the fullest extent possible is reinforced by a provisionallowing for any legal resident of Arizona to collect money damages by showing that “anyofficial or agency . . . [has] adopt[ed] or implement[ed] a policy” that “limits or restricts theenforcement of federal immigration laws . . . to less than the full extent permitted by federallaw.”4. S.B. 1070 pursues only one goal – “attrition” – and ignores the many otherobjectives that Congress has established for the federal immigration system. And even inpursuing attrition, S.B. 1070 disrupts federal enforcement priorities and resources that focuson aliens who pose a threat to national security or public safety. If allowed to go into effect,2
 
 
12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728S.B. 1070’s mandatory enforcement scheme will conflict with and undermine the federalgovernment’s careful balance of immigration enforcement priorities and objectives. Forexample, it will impose significant and counterproductive burdens on the federal agenciescharged with enforcing the national immigration scheme, diverting resources and attentionfrom the dangerous aliens who the federal government targets as its top enforcement priority.It will cause the detention and harassment of authorized visitors, immigrants, and citizenswho do not have or carry identification documents specified by the statute, or who otherwisewill be swept into the ambit of S.B. 1070’s “attrition through enforcement” approach. It willconflict with longstanding federal law governing the registration, smuggling, andemployment of aliens. It will altogether ignore humanitarian concerns, such as theprotections available under federal law for an alien who has a well-founded fear of persecution or who has been the victim of a natural disaster. And it will interfere with vitalforeign policy and national security interests by disrupting the United States’ relationshipwith Mexico and other countries.5. The United States understands the State of Arizona’s legitimate concerns aboutillegal immigration, and has undertaken significant efforts to secure our nation’s borders.The federal government, moreover, welcomes cooperative efforts by states and localities toaid in the enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws. But the United States Constitutionforbids Arizona from supplanting the federal government’s immigration regime with its ownstate-specific immigration policy – a policy that, in purpose and effect, interferes with thenumerous interests the federal government must balance when enforcing and administeringthe immigration laws and disrupts the balance actually established by the federalgovernment. Accordingly, S.B. 1070 is invalid under the Supremacy Clause of the UnitedStates Constitution and must be struck down.
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
6. This action arises under the Constitution of the United States, Article VI, Clause2 and Article I, Section 8, and the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”), 8 U.S.C.§ 1101,
et seq.
This Court has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 13313

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